Wrapping around the edges of East Campus are nine lush acres of forest. Through the woods is a dirt and gravel trail. Wooden signs beside small paths disappearing into the trees mark three separate trailheads.
This urban forest with its rocky path is Clyde Wilson Memorial Park, where Mike Zawalski walks his eager dog, Charles, almost every day.
“I like the hills because they get rid of his energy,” said Zawalski, an MU senior.
Starting in the fall, the trail that tires out Charles will be getting a few updates, including new trailhead amenities and maintenance. The budget for the improvements is $50,000, and they are expected to be completed by spring of 2019.
Senior park planner Mike Snyder and his team held a meeting July 12 to present the improvements to citizens. Their reactions were mostly positive, Snyder said.
“It’s a very natural park, so people weren’t wanting a lot of expensive amenities,” Snyder said. “They were pretty happy with the minimal approach we were showing.”
The meeting also allowed citizens to provide criticism and ask questions. Pedestrians who live in the area use the park the most, and the Columbia Parks and Recreation Department wanted to be sure to take in their suggestions, Snyder said.
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